HOLMES COUNTY Â– Each year, Holmes County is the site of several agriculture research trials under the direction of the University of FloridaÂ’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS). At the helm of these annual projects is Holmes County UF/IFAS Extension Director and Agriculture Agent Kalyn Waters.
Waters says the trials are meant to validate research, as well as educate those in the local agricultural industry.
Â“The mission of these trials is to validate the University of FloridaÂ’s research and to allow producers to see firsthand how the findings will perform on the farms and ranches in Holmes County,Â” said Waters.
This yearÂ’s trial was located at the Williams farm, near Poplar Springs and focused on cool season forages. Cool season forages are a vital part of nutrition for cattle in the fall and winter months because seasonal grasses are dormant. The two–year trial consisted of rye grass, oats, triticale and rye to look at how they perform with different fertilizer rates and application times. Each variety of forage is genetically grown to suit different strengths for various production scenarios. The trial ended in March with the findings showing that timing and rate of fertilizer application impact each forage type differently.
These trials usually run from November until the beginning of April and are done across the entire state as part of The Dairy Check Off Program, which is funded to support the dairy industry across the entire state.
For more information on these and other trials, contact the Holmes County UF/IFAS office between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, at 850-547-1108.